December 4, 2017

Strong Feelings

“We feel strongly that they should step up and play a role and work with the federal government in this process … We did a thorough assessment and that was completed, and this was the number that we put forward to Congress.”

— White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders suggested in a press conference that Texas hasn’t put up enough of its own money for recovery from Hurricane Harvey. Texas Gov. Greg Abbott has criticized the Trump administration’s $44 billion request to Congress for disaster relief in his state and other areas hammered by storms as “completely inadequate.”

Racial Class Action

“A hotbed for racist behavior.”

— That’s how a recent class-action lawsuit describes the atmosphere at the California production plant of U.S. automaker Tesla Inc.

Making Their Case

“We’ve always said it’s not a question of whether a pipeline will spill, but when, and today TransCanada is making our case for us.”

— Sierra Club Beyond Dirty Fuels Campaign Director Kelly Martin, in a statement after TransCanada Corp. discovered its Keystone pipeline had leaked an estimated 210,000 gallons of oil in northeastern South Dakota. The discovery came just days before Nebraska regulators approved the proposed Keystone XL oil pipeline, which expands the South Dakota pipeline. Martin said the only way to protect against leaks in the future is for Nebraska to reject the Keystone XL pipeline.

FEMA (Non) Response


— Everglades City, Fla., Mayor Howie Grimm, responded jokingly when asked about the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s Irma recovery response in the tiny town of 400. Many in the community say FEMA has been stingy with assistance since the major hurricane hit the state on September 10 and pushed a 9-foot wall of seawater into the town located on the southwest side of the state.

Lax Safety Culture

“Had any of these issues been addressed, the accident may have been prevented.”

— National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) investigator Joe Gordon, at a public meeting at the agency’s Washington, D.C., headquarters after federal investigators said two maintenance workers who were struck and killed by a speeding Amtrak train near Philadelphia last year were the victims of a lax safety culture that had permeated the government-owned railroad. The NTSB said the April 2016 crash in Chester, Pa., was the tragic outcome of years of rule bending, corner cutting and punitive policies that had endangered and upset Amtrak workers and their unions.